Publisher’s Summary: Killers once feared Piotr Petrovich. Now, they’ve sent his son home to him—in a body bag. Haunted by his failures, Piotr journeys across Russia to learn what type of man his son really was, while hunting the bastards who killed him. And once Piotr finds them, they will learn to fear him once more…. GLAAD Media Award-nominated writer STEVE ORLANDO (VIRGIL, Midnighter) and artist GARRY BROWN (BLACK ROAD) deliver an emotional, bone-shattering account of murder, masculinity, and mayhem.
In just a single issue, it becomes obvious that Orlando’s new series is going to be one that entertains as much as it emotionally taxes readers. More so than the murder and the mayhem, Crude’s focus is placed on masculinity and the strained relationship between a father and son. This type of thought-provoking depth is often missing from modern comics and ultimately is what works to separate the good books from the great ones. In Issue #1, it soon becomes obvious that although Piotr Petrovich has an unhealthy amount of emotional baggage, writer Steve Orlando is working through some stuff too. This ‘work’ that Orlando is doing or has done for that matter, adds to the story and enriches his writing; when an author is emotionally vested in a work, it makes it much easier for readers to become invested in the story thanks to the confidence that a writer is able to instill on account of their own personal ties and attachments.
In addition to the rich story that lurks beneath its surface, Crude is primed to be an action-packed series that hits hard and keeps moving. Blending and balancing the thought-provoking scenes with the easy-to-swallow ass-kickery that is sure to ensue, isn’t easy, but I am confident in Orlando’s abilities to get the job done.
In a story like this, tone and feel are paramount to achieving the desired emotional effect. Thankfully, Gary Brown’s impactful illustrations and near-cinematic style create a vehicle for Orlando to utilize in bringing the story closer to the reader and vice versa. I especially appreciate Brown’s framing and scene-setting; he creates a certain intimacy between reader and story by bringing the action and the intensity to the front of the stage. Being this close to a story this intense is an experience worth taking note of.
The Bottom Line:
Emotionally intense, Crude, is an explosive new series from writer Steve Orlando and artist Gary Brown. Issue #1 is a stunning debut for what promises to be a hard-hitting new series from the house of Image.